WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2019
a•gainst /əˈgɛnst/USA pronunciation   prep. 
  1. in opposition to;
    contrary to:twenty votes against ten.
  2. in resistance to or defense from:protection against mosquitoes.
  3. in an opposite direction to:walking against the wind.
  4. in or into contact with;
    upon:Don't lean against the door.
  5. in preparation for:saving money against a rainy day.
  6. having as background: a design of flowers against a dark wall.
  7. Businessto be deducted from:The loan was an advance against salary.
  8. in competition with:a race against time.
  9. in contrast with:Use reason as against emotion.
  1. have something against, [+ object] to be in opposition to;
    be opposed to:She has something against my attending the class.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2019
a•gainst  (ə genst, ə gānst),USA pronunciation prep. 
  1. in opposition to;
    contrary to;
    adverse or hostile to:twenty votes against ten; against reason.
  2. in resistance to or defense from:protection against burglars.
  3. in an opposite direction to:to ride against the wind.
  4. into contact or collision with;
    upon:The rain beat against the window.
  5. in contact with:to lean against the wall.
  6. in preparation for;
    in provision for:money saved against a rainy day.
  7. having as background:a design of flowers against a dark wall.
  8. Businessin exchange for;
    as a balance to or debit or charge on:He asked for an advance against his salary.
  9. in competition with:a racehorse running against his own record time.
  10. in comparison or contrast with:a matter of reason as against emotion.
  11. beside;
    before:The car is against the building.
  12. over against, in contrast with:the rich over against the poor.

  1. [Archaic.]before;
    by the time that.
  • 1125–75; Middle English agens, ageynes, equivalent. to ageyn again + -es -s1; for -t compare whilst, amongst

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

against /əˈɡɛnst; əˈɡeɪnst/ prep
  1. opposed to; in conflict or disagreement with
  2. standing or leaning beside or in front of: a ladder against the wall
  3. coming in contact with
  4. in contrast to: silhouettes are outlines against a light background
  5. having an adverse or unfavourable effect on: the economic system works against small independent companies
  6. as a protection from or means of defence from the adverse effects of: a safeguard against contaminated water
  7. in exchange for or in return for
  8. rare in preparation for: he gave them warm clothing against their journey through the night
  9. as againstas opposed to or as compared with
Etymology: 12th Century: ageines, from again, ageyn, etc, again + -es genitive ending; the spelling with -t (C16) was probably due to confusion with superlatives ending in -st

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